grief on an answering machinechemistry tells us
matter cannot be destroyed
from one form to another.
i heard you today
on old voicemails;
the voice that kisses
the boundaries of being,
screaming the conservation of the soul,
tells me you are here
even when you are not
it is only a sound.
i have remembered a plethora of them; searching
for the moments i can remember your nervous humming, your raucous prayers.
but i only know the staccato breaths of a starting engine
i have spoken sotto voce into the mouths of unripe girls
i hear lawnmowers screaming in yards they burned down to build a shopping mall
i fuck a boy to the sound of passing trains.
these are sounds to throw away, sounds i do not need
but your voice is not one of them
mourning you is a second language
and i am stumbling through sentences.
i don’t know the word for ‘goodbye’
so teach m
constellatinghis soul is a nomad and it never stays
but it stayed long enough
to count ambulance lights
as wishing stars,
while we count bruises as battle scars
and heartaches as entire worlds
his soul was a settler, once,
staying only for the
voices of doctors that smoothed
out the wrinkles
in the inevitable,
but he had to go.
now he wades in and out
of waters rolling like the tidal archs
of ferris wheels. you can hear him
in the final trill of beethoven's last opus,
find him waxing and waning
on moons we cannot hold in our hands.
no one can touch daytime
but he bends sunrays like
softened metal. he is there:
the energy inside a paintbrush,
the potential and actual.
he is the cinematic and the too real,
the quantum and indefinite.
he is machine guns and flowers,
opium and starlight. he does not
mourn the years
that were ripped away
because he is still here; he is
his soul is a nomad and it never stays
in one place, cycling
ode to you, if you ever goall i want to do in math class
is write poems about my dog
and how we buried her in the yard
that one winter
when you weren't there to see
and there was blood on my hands
but i was still clean, when the rattling
of her bus-crushed bones in a wheelbarrow
became the thud of her frozen name falling out of my mouth.
grieving her turns into grieving you,
trauma snowballing in the wake of spring
(my crying is about you even when it's not)
i know you are gone now,
burying other madnesses
in another backyard, while i hang myself
on the trees in mine and think about how
my dad could've saved my dog
if he would've fixed
the fucking electric fence
like he promised a thousand times;
i promise a thousand times
that i was still clean, that winter when you left
before the dog died and you weren't there to tell me
that we're all gonna die anyway. i needed to hear it then;
i was becoming unclean,
needing to be tethered to something's gravity, i had
a mind made up of the way my dog's eyes look when she'